Barred from South Africa during apartheid for taking a stand against racism, International Ambassador of Peace and speaker Prem Rawat has returned to the country carrying his message of peace during his 16 days of activism tour.

Along with his message of peace, Rawat talks the Business of Life and emphasizes that it is the most important thing. “When life is not right nothing else falls into place. When you don’t feel alive, everything else just seems so static”, he says.

Asked about the importance of living a balanced life; Rawat says “Life will be balanced if those forces that throw it out of balance are removed. Life wants balance – there is a want for joy, there is a want for happiness. There is no limit on how happy we can be but for sadness, fear, pain, anger we definitely have low tolerance and that right there tells us something”.  

We understand that happiness is for a while and joy is what we should be striving for and this is something that Prem attests to. “A lot of people think that being prosperous brings happiness and they look at prosperity as just one thing, which is to make a lot of money. Prosperity also includes good health and being happy with what is happening in your life. To be happy we need hope, to be happy we need gratitude in our lives, to be happy we need self-reliance and not always rely of what others say about us and to be happy we also need to know ourselves. We need to know who we are and what our needs are. We are confused about our wants and our needs and we go on looking for things that we do not need. We need to understand what is important – and that is you being fulfilled. An unlit candle cannot light another”.

Speaking at one of his peace talk gatherings


One of the points that Rawat emphasizes is self-awareness. “Knowing yourself begins with a simple introspection and then there is a very beautiful way to be able to do this introspection through a programme that I’m offering called the Peace Education Programme. It has benefitted so many people – in prisons, in military, in the police force; everybody is discovering that they are not limited by their own imagination but there is a whole dimension to understand that there is courage in you. When you understand the courage within, you start to understand who you are. You understand that the components that are within you are powerful - kindness is in you all the time of course so is anger and hatred but joy is in you, love, understanding, forgiveness and we have only used one spectrum of ourselves – hate. People are convinced that attaining peace is not possible. Without peace the fabric of society is going to fall apart. Nothing is gluing us together”.

During his 16 days of activism tour Prem Rawat addressed gatherings in Soweto, Sebokeng and in Cape Town speaking on the themes of eliminating violence through reconciliation, hope and forgiveness. He is also the founder of The Prem Rawat Foundation which addresses human needs of food, water and peace through the TPFR’s Food for People innovative program that provides nutritious meals to children and ailing adults in India, Nepal and Ghana.


By Amanda Matshaka

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